Growing up, I have always had a very deep interest in video games. I would play games with my older brother day and night. My first experience with programming involved modding an MMORPG that I was obsessed with. Ever since, I have been drawn to development, which I have pursued throughout college and my professional life.
I majored in Computer and Electrical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, where I fell in love with computer graphics. I decided to make that the focus of my graduate studies at Stanford University where I obtained a Masters’ degree. I have been a member of The Sims 4 team ever since graduating in the summer of 2012.
Getting Your Start with EA
At Stanford, I took a class on Real Time Rendering. The final project consisted of a video game development competition. Each of the entries had to make use of some advanced rendering technique in order to qualify. My team made it all the way to the finals, where my future manager and mentor was on the judging panel. He offered me an internship at EA, which I was ecstatic to accept. I have been here ever since!
Working at EA
As I started my career I was worried about being able to maintain a healthy work-life balance. However I quickly learned our managers and production partners always work hard to ensure that we are not overworked while still putting out the best features for our players.
The most challenging times happen during the few months prior to a game's release date. While there certainly are periods of time we have to put in extra work, the satisfaction of shipping a successful product and the players' happy responses makes it all worth it.
EA’s dedication to its employees has helped me improve my health and inspires me to give back to the community. The café, for example, focuses on a healthy and balanced diet. The on-site gym provides people an opportunity to carve out time for exercise in their busy schedules. I am also very proud of our efforts to help the community around EA, such as sponsoring programs that encourage children to be interested in science and math. Thanks to Girls Who Code, I was able to mentor a high school student and guide her through some of her academic and career decisions. This has inspired me to be more involved in community service and volunteering.
Any Thoughts to Those Seeking a Career at EA?
My advice to anyone is to try. If at first you fail, try again. You never know when you are going to get your dream job!